Monday, September 26, 2022

Digital Identity Day: Pantami Clinches Award As Best Performing Minister

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami has been recognised as the best performing digital minister for the year 2022 in recognition of his unprecedented performance in digital transformation and the national identity programme.

The award, which was received on behalf of the minister by the director, research and development, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr. Agu Collins Agu was to commend him for the good work he has been doing at the ministry, especially in developing Nigeria’s digital economy, by promoting the use of digital platforms.

The event is part of activities to mark the International Identity Day 2022, organised by the Abia State government through the Office of the Special Assistant on National Identity Management Commission Ecosystem and Related Matters, Princess Glad Chidinma-Apugo Osoagbaka.

Pantami applauded the executive governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Victor Ikpeazu for the development of IT infrastructure in the state and the priority given to the private sector to integrate information and communication technologies (ICT) into the activities of different sectors of the state’s economy.

“I accept this award and extend my sincere appreciation to the government and people of Abia State and, also, to fellow Nigerians for this recognition.  It is also a great pleasure that I am receiving this award on the day the world commemorates International Identity Day.

“I commend the team that put this event together. Abia State, Aba, in particular, has a reputation of being a thriving commercial and industrial hub for different types of goods and services. Digital identity can greatly enhance commerce and industrialisation,” he added.

The minister recalled that United Nations Sustainable Development Goals provide the ambitious target that all people will be able to obtain a legal identity by 2030 (SDG 16.9), adding that, according to a May 2022 report by the UNDP, there is still a huge identity gap with nearly 1 billion people unable to prove who they are.

“Digital identity and the digital economy are not only linked but are reinforcing themselves as the bases for digital economy platforms. Digital identification can be an important catalyst for various development initiatives in the continent, impacting on trade, governance, social protection, financial inclusion, domestic resource mobilisation, as well as security and human rights.”

Pantami said digital identity is the fabric of the digital economy and by expanding the digital identity database, Nigeria has positioned itself to reap the benefits of embracing the digital economy sustainably.

According to him, it is remarkable that Nigeria recorded a significant increase in National Identification Number (NIN) issuance, from 41million [persons] in August 2020, when NIMC was put under the ministry’s supervision, to about 89million [persons] as of August 2022, making it 48million [persons] enrolling additionally in 24 months.

“I had the privilege of speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2022, alongside the WEF chairman Kalus Schwab and one recurring theme in the different sessions was the importance of the digital economy in every aspect of our lives.  This realisation became more apparent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the same vein, as the chairman of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) 2022, I am leading efforts to promote the importance of the digital economy in addressing the sustainable development goals of the United Nations.

“The digital economy has also proven to be a veritable platform for the creation of jobs.  For example, in 2017 alone, the digital economy contributed 5.1million jobs to the economy of the United States. An official report in China also noted that the digital economy created 191 million jobs in the country in 2018 and this was about 25 per cent of the total employment generated that year.

“In Nigeria, the digital economy has played a key part in developing the different sectors of our digital economy.  One key example is how the digital economy helped us to exit recession as a nation. The ICT sector was the fastest growing sector in both the fourth quarter of 2020 and the entire year 2020, based on the report by the National Bureau of Statistics.”

He stressed that the sector’s 14.70 per cent double-digit growth rate played a principal role in supporting Nigeria to exit the recession triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic a year faster than experts predicted. The growth rate of the sector exceeded 4 times the next fastest growing sector of Q4 2020, which had a growth rate of 3.42 per cent. I am also very pleased to let you know that the ICT sector recorded an unprecedented contribution of 18.44 per cent to Nigeria’s GDP in Q2, 2022, and this is the highest-ever contribution.

“I urge Your Excellency to take advantage of digital ID programmes and solutions to significantly enhance Abia State’s commercial and industrial output,” he concluded.

Ikpeazu, represented by his deputy, Sir Ude Oko Chukwu, appreciated the minister for the support he provided to help the state achieve a lot within a short period.

He said the ministry has assisted Abia in the development of data collection, as data gave access to necessary information that provides access to the knowledge of the number of people, irrespective of their gender and age difference.

Website | + posts

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

get in touch

1,815FansLike
101FollowersFollow
47FollowersFollow

Latest News

Related Articles

%d bloggers like this: